I haven’t had the opportunity to write and operate my website as often as I used to, and there is so so much to write about all over the Nashville spectrum (and so many other different music communities ) that I have had a truly hard time keeping up. One day soon, I will get it all back on track here!
Generally speaking, I really wanted to touch on a few things that have happened around Nashville in the past few months ( some good and some bad ). There may be a few future articles after this one concerning a few of these issues on here.
I moved down here in 1997, near my birthday in November to pursue writing Country Music, and to pursue my own quest to acquire as much knowledge about Country Music as I can….honestly all genres of music, but Country was always my favorite. See, at that time the internet was such a young fledgling thing, that it wasn’t a major part of society yet. We had to do things the old fashioned way by mail or word of mouth, and going out and beating the pavement!
Nashville was growing by leaps and bounds, with thousands moving here daily…but it had not suffered the results of corporate shit…yet. When I got down here to live, they took away one of the staples of Nashville that even Mr. Roy Acuff used to love, which was Opryland. To historians like myself, and to Country Music fans alike, Opryland was the epicenter of it all. It represented dignity and family orientated fun for all.
Alas, business and greed for more money resulted in the overall shit decision to remove the theme park with a mall nobody goes to. The Opry and all of it’s glorious attractions were bought up by Gaylord, and in the past the Opry itself suffered a long sickness of inducting pop country and mediocre bands into it’s membership.
However, lately the Opry has been listening and have inducted several new members that were of good quality, and has invited many more here lately that are decent. I have a bunch of articles coming up that are going to feature some of the new bands involved.
Then we had another debacle years ago where we tried like HELL to save the almighty Printer’s Alley..well we lost that one, and it was all replaced with high dollar expensive apartments. Apparently, it seems the ongoing thing in Nashville is to replace all of the music places with condos and weird bagel shops, and other pish posh boutiques and cupcake stores.
They absolutely destroyed Music Row in today’s day and age, as I go down Demonbreoun and those adjoining streets, places like Bobby’s Idle Hour are now gone. All of the beer joints are slowly leaving and it’s changing the ambiance of the city to something else. All of the music shops are gone and they are all high dollar shit bars with fake moonshine and weird food.
But what inspired me to ultimately write this article was the recent announcement to ultimately close the original Mercy Lounge and the adjoining bars. Basically the lease is ending, and the firm that bought the property is not allowing them to re new the lease.
Todd Ohlhauser, the owner of the business, posted the following on their Twitter page:
“The Mercy Lounge complex will end its near 20 year run on Cannery Row at the end of May 2022. Our lease is ending and we will be relocating the venues to a new location, TBD. We hope to be back better than ever. Let’s make these last 8 months on Cannery Row the best ever!”
In October 2019, local businessman Zach Liff and New York City-based global real estate company Thor Equities Group paid $32 million for the Cannery complex. At the time, the company said in a press release it hoped to eventually add mixed-use buildings with a collective 500,000 square feet to the 2.8-acre site .Later, Liff bought out Thor.
However, the owner Mr. Chark Kinsolving has indeed opened a new music venue I have yet to check out called Eastside Bowl, which is the old Madison Bowl location. They have been featuring a plethora of good shows, and I’ll be doing more work for them soon.
The memories I have of all of those venues over at Cannery Row are too many to type in one article here. Man, I paid to see everyone from Cannibal Corpse to Dr. Dre there. I recently covered a Hillbilly Casino show there, I’m still working on right now, and had a good time.
Ultimately, this is basically a prelude article of what is to come and lamenting on what is gone in Nashville. I know…I know times must change and Nashville must “evolve” but it’s just getting ridiculous!